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Waking the Feminists Northern Ireland: The Headcount

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Maggie Cronin reflects on findings on gender breakdown in Arts Council Northern Irelancore-founded theatre companies with Dr. Ali Fitzgibbon

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29 November, 1 – 2pm

EVENT WILL TAKE PLACE VIA ZOOM. Please register to receive link.

Between August 2017 and March 2019, the research group of Waking the Feminists Northern Ireland (WTFNI) undertook a survey of the gender breakdown within eight Arts Council of Northern Ireland core funded theatre companies during the time period of 2014 – 2019. Their aim was to collect data on the number of female theatre practitioners working and the types of roles they had within these companies. Please join us to reflect on (in)equality in theatre and the role and potential of research in campaign for change. In conversation with Ali FitzGibbon, Maggie Cronin will discuss the emergence of Waking the Feminists NI. This Northern movement emerged from the grassroots campaign, Waking the Feminists, started in 2015 as a call for equality for women across the Irish theatre sector. Maggie will present the approach and journey of the collaborative research and share insights from their findings.

Please join us in what promises to be an interesting and thought-provoking discussion.

Maggie Cronin’s career spans many genres including TV, film, stage, radio and voice over. Previous and current professional work includes the films includes ‘Gravest Hit’, (LA Shorts International Festival & Belfast Film Festival). ‘Zone 414’, and Academy Award winning short ‘The Shore’, directed by Terry George. For theatre, she has appeared on London’s West End, New York’s Broadway and many points in between! Her first solo show, ‘A Most Notorious Woman’ won the Stewart Parker Trust/BBC Radio Drama Award (publisher: Lagan Press). As part of WTFNI’s research group she surveyed the gender breakdown in eight ACNI core funded theatres, producing the ‘Headcount’ report. Currently, Maggie is undertaking a full time Practice as Research PhD at Queen’s University, Belfast, on the ‘Lived experiences and unique challenges facing female theatre practitioners in Northern Ireland’.

Ali FitzGibbon is a Senior Lecturer at Queen’s University Belfast and head of Arts Management and Cultural Policy. She researches decision-making, ethics and labour in contemporary cultural production. Her doctoral research on the artist as stakeholder was shortlisted for the 2020 ENCATC Research Award and she has published in a range of international journals. She has over 25 years’ experience as a multi-arts producer, programmer and consultant. She is Co-Investigator on ‘Freelancers in the Dark’ (ESRC) and ‘Future Screens NI’, part of the UK Creative Industries Clusters Programme.

An event as part of the NEW READS series for Cultural Policy Observatory Ireland, made possible through the support of UCD’s School of Art History and Cultural Policy.

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